The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Very sticky, thick starter

Hamlet's picture
Hamlet

Very sticky, thick starter

Hi! First-time starter-maker here...been following instructions on King Arthur blog using regular old bread flour and some bottled water I found in the fridge. For the first two full days, the starter seemed really active and was stirrable. It bubbled and even began to smell recognizably sour by the end of the second day. Here we are end day three, still lots of bubbles on top, and I went for a second feeding of the day but found the starter really sticky and thick. I thought to forego the feeding and just stir and see what happens overnight...is this the right call? Should I try less flour? How often should I be feeding at this point (now beg. day 4)?

Any help appreciated, thank you !

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

Scroll down to the bottom of this post to see the schedule. http://www.thefreshloaf.com/10901/pineapple-juice-solution-part-2

Somewhere in the post, before the schedule starts, there is explanation of the four phases of a starter.

At some point it tricks you, but you have to keep faith, and "don't feed too much" until it starts doubling or "blooming" every feed.  Feeding too much dilutes the acid and prevents the progression through the stages.  Then, as the author points out, past a certain point, "don't feed too little." 

Bon chance, et bon appétit, amigo.

Hamlet's picture
Hamlet

I fed it yesterday morning, it was the seventh or eighth day, and it really exploded and felt like the right consistency. Today it is really bubbling! Will try to make a loaf tonight or tomorrow :) !!

newchapter's picture
newchapter

Does anyone know if it’s too late?

A brand new starter can give a false sense of yeast development, when it’s actually bacteria.  (Leuconostoc bacteria)  When you’re beginning a new starter, you can retard the growth of a Leuconostoc bacteria strain with pineapple juice.  Regardless of whether or not it’s too late for pineapple juice, I doubt it’s too late for your starter.  You’re on the right track with foregoing feeding, but continuing to stir it.  Stirring your starter about every 12 hours, will aerate it & help it to overcome any Leuconostoc bacteria strain.

Best wishes,

Cathy

Hamlet's picture
Hamlet

And after feeding yesterday it really came alive. She's alive!!

newchapter's picture
newchapter

Perhaps she needs to be named, then! 😉